The kindness of a stranger.... by Jasa

Lately I have resigned myself to the fact that most people are tired of hearing about the war and the soldiers, they are stuck on the politics of the whole situation and have forgotten about the thousands who serve to protect us everyday without fail or reservation. But then something happened...

Tonight I went grocery shopping in a store that I frequent, but this one is in another town that I do not frequent, for some reason, tonight I just turned the other way.

Bella and I were deciding what kind of juice to buy and she was getting antsy, so I gave her my cell phone and she was fiddling with it for a while and then she asked to call my mom and then my sister. So we called my sister and they talked for a while, but Bella quit talking so I took the phone back and told Jess good-bye and kept shopping. A few minutes later Bella asked if we could call Bapa, that's what the kids call my dad, and I told her that I did not have the phone number for his office in Iraq, so she asked where he was in Iraq and I told her that he is near where daddy was and we went on shopping.

As we turned the frozen food aisle a women walked up to us and said that she had overheard our conversation about Iraq and wanted to make sure that we told my dad and husband thank you for all they are doing. I never know quite what to say when people say this- it doesn't happen too often- so I told her thank you and that I would tell them. She went on talking and then handed me something and said that it wasn't much compared to what we had already sacrificed, but she and her husband wanted to do something. I again thanked her and assured her I would thank my dad and husband, at this point I am almost in tears, I always feel like I should have something more to say than Thank You.

As she walked away I looked down and saw that she had handed me a gift card for the grocery store we were in. She must have known that I was on a pretty tight budget this week!! I figured that she had just saved me $10.00 and was grateful for that. When Bella and I reached the check-out, I opened the gift card and was written out for $50.00!! I wanted to run out in the parking lot and thank this woman and tell her what it means to have people really mean it when they say " Thank your so-and-so for serving"

I don't make a point to go around stores saying that my family is serving in Iraq in the hopes that someone with deep pockets will overhear and hand me their AmEx and say "Whatever you want" We are very proud of our friends and family who are serving all over the Middle East and I just wish that everyone would stop for a minute and realize that the soldiers are doing their job. They don't sign up hoping to miss births, deaths, birthdays, first days, first steps, first home-runs, anniversaries, holidays or to watch their families go on without them. They sign up to feel a sense of pride, that they are doing something good, that they are helping make the world a safer, better place for all of us.

To them I say THANK YOU and I meant it. To the kind woman in the grocery store I say THANK YOU, you have restored my faith in the kindness of strangers, thank you.

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